Magical Chicken Ginseng Soup

  • Serves2
  • DifficultyHard
2L boiling water
10 packets (3 grams each) Korean red ginseng tea
2 baby chickens (poussin)
4 large cloves garlic
3 jujube dates, or 15 gogi berries
3 dried pieces of dried Korean red ginseng (optional)
2 cooked chestnuts, peeled
200g uncooked sweet rice

For the garnish

2 pinches of dried chilli flakes
Handful fresh pea shoots
1 tablespoon roasted sesame oil
1 teaspoon black sesame seeds
Freshly ground black pepper

Brew the ginseng tea by mixing together the boiling water and the ginseng sachets until dissolved. Set aside.

Rinse the chickens with cold water. Place two garlic cloves, one date, one piece of ginseng, a chestnut, and 2 tablespoons of rice into the cavity of each bird. Skewer each closed with a toothpick.

Place the remaining rice in a double layer piece of muslin or cheesecloth with of the remaining ginseng and date. Tie the cloth closed tightly but leave a little bit of extra space for the rice to expand.

Place chickens and rice bag into a large wide heavy-bottomed pot. Cover with the tea, and top off with water to cover, if necessary. Bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce the heat and simmer, occasionally skimming away any fat that comes to the surface, until cooked through, about 2 hours.

When done the chickens should be very soft and fall apart easily when tugged at. Carefully transfer the chickens to two bowls and divide the broth between them. Top the chickens with chili threads, garnish with pea shoots, and a sprinkle of black sesame seeds.

Drizzle with sesame oil. Unwrap the rice package in a separate bowl and sprinkle with black sesame seeds, if you like.

Serve with salt and pepper on the side.

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